Toeava set to start

Centre Isaia Toeava has been named in the New Zealand side to face Australia in the final Bledisloe Cup match of the season. [more]

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Centre Isaia Toeava has been named in the New Zealand side to face Australia in the final Bledisloe Cup match of the season.

Auckland utility back Toeava has been capped three times by coach Graham Henry, and will play at centre at Eden Park – his first start on home soil.

Mils Muliaina moves to full-back, with Henry electing to put Leon Macdonald among his reserves.

Henry said: "’Ice’ (Toeava) is a talented young man and the challenge of starting at centre against Australia is the next step in his development.

"We have a number of players in good form which gives us options.

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"This move bolsters our options at 15, keeps Leon MacDonald fresh, and makes room for Isaia in the starting line-up."

Macdonald starts on the bench, with Toeava’s provincial team-mate Doug Howlett returning on the right wing. Jason Eaton returns to partner Chris Jack at lock while Ali Williams moves to the replacement bench.

Luke McAlister has recovered from a jaw injury sustained playing for North Harbour and takes his place among the reserves.

Half-back Jimmy Cowan was not considered for selection due to an ankle injury.

Team: Mils Muliaina (Waikato), Doug Howlett, Isaia Toeava (both Auckland), Aaron Mauger (Canterbury), Joe Rokocoko, Dan Carter (Canterbury), Byron Kelleher (Waikato); Tony Woodcock (North Harbour), Keven Mealamu (Auckland), Carl Hayman (Otago), Chris Jack (Tasman), Jason Eaton (Taranaki), Jerry Collins (Wellington), Richie McCaw (Canterbury, captain), Rodney So’oialo (Wellington)

Reserves: Andrew Hore (Taranaki), Ali Williams (Auckland), Chris Masoe, Piri Weepu (both Wellington), Luke McAlister (North Harbour), Greg Somerville, Leon MacDonald (both Canterbury)

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